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Dr Space Junk vs The Universe (Digital Audiobook)

Archaeology and the Future

By Alice Gorman, Cat Gould (Narrator)

Publication Date: October 21, 2019

Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (10/22/2019)
Paperback (11/10/2020)


Alice Gorman is a space archaeologist: she examines the artifacts of human encounters with space. These objects, left behind on Earth and in space, can be massive (dead satellites in eternal orbit) or tiny (discarded zip ties around a defunct space antenna). They can be bold (an American flag on the moon) or hopeful (messages from Earth sent into deep space). They raise interesting questions: Why did Elon Musk feel compelled to send a red Tesla into space? What accounts for the multiple rocket-themed playgrounds constructed after the Russians launched Sputnik? Gorman—affectionately known as "Dr Space Junk"—takes readers on a journey through the solar system and beyond, deploying space artifacts, historical explorations, and even the occasional cocktail recipe in search of the ways that we make space meaningful.

Engaging and erudite, Gorman recounts her background as a (nonspace) archaeologist and how she became interested in space artifacts. She shows us her own piece of space junk: a fragment of the fuel tank insulation from Skylab, the NASA spacecraft that crash landed in Western Australia in 1979. She explains that the conventional view of the space race as "the triumph of the white, male American astronaut" seems inadequate; what really interests her, she says, is how everyday people engage with space.

About the Author

Cat Gould grew up in Sydney, Australia, and after extensive travel moved to the United States in 1990. She is a classically trained actress with a BFA from Southern Oregon University and has performed in many regional productions. Her passion for storytelling, communication, and language is matched well with her dexterity with characters and dialect. She can communicate in French, Spanish, and Italian, and is a voracious reader of fiction, philosophy, and psychology to deepen her understanding and ability to express the human condition.